Tuesday, July 11, 2017

CubCrafters CC11-160, registered to and operated by the pilot, N111JW: Accident occurred July 09, 2017 in Milesville, Haakon County, South Dakota

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Rapid City, South Dakota
CubCrafters; Yakima, Washington
Continental Motors; Mobile, Alabama

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms 

Location: Milesville, SD
Accident Number: CEN17LA265
Date & Time: 07/09/2017, 1309 MDT
Registration: N111JW
Aircraft: CUBCRAFTERS INC CC11-160
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel starvation
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On July 9, 2017, at 1309 mountain daylight time, a CubCrafters CC11-160 airplane, N111JW, was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a loss of engine power during cruise flight near Milesville, South Dakota. The pilot sustained minor injuries. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight was not operated on a flight plan. The flight originated from the Aberdeen Regional Airport (ABR), Aberdeen, South Dakota, at 1109, with an intended destination of the Rapid City Regional Airport (RAP), Rapid City, South Dakota.

On the day of the accident, the pilot departed the Harry Stern Airport (BWP), Wahpeton, North Dakota at 0904 and arrived at ABR at 1036. The pilot reported that airplane was "topped off" at ABR before he departed for RAP. Due to stronger than anticipated head winds, he decided to divert to the Philip Airport (PHP), Philip, South Dakota, to maintain an adequate fuel reserve. Shortly afterward, while the airplane was in cruise flight, the engine "abruptly stopped, [with] no coughing or sputtering." He verified that the fuel selector was set to both. Each fuel tank appeared to have one-quarter tank remaining. His attempts to restart the engine were not successful and he executed a forced landing to an open field. He noted that the airspeed might have decayed on final approach resulting in an inadvertent aerodynamic stall and hard landing. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage and both wings. The main landing gear collapsed.

A postaccident examination engine test run was conducted by FAA inspectors, with the assistance of technical representatives from the airframe and engine manufacturers. The engine remained attached to the airframe. The carburetor was displaced aft but appeared otherwise intact. A small oil leak was observed at the sump near the carburetor. The fuel tanks contained fuel, and positive fuel flow to the carburetor was confirmed. Both fuel caps appeared to be secure. No evidence of in-flight fuel leakage or a fuel system obstruction was observed. The one electrical lead from the ignition module was disconnected; however, it could not be determined if that occurred in-flight or as a result of the accident sequence.

The engine was run on the airframe using an external fuel supply plumbed directly to the carburetor fuel inlet. The disconnected ignition lead was reattached before the run. The engine started on the first attempt and ran at 1,120 rpm. The test run was limited to 7 seconds due to the oil leak. A second test run with a duration of 29 seconds was completed; the engine ran at ,1510 rpm. The cylinder head and exhaust gas temperatures increased normally. No anomalies were observed.

Engine data was recovered from the airplane avionics system; the data was recorded at 1-second intervals. (All time references are with respect to the local time at the accident site – mountain daylight time.) The initial data point related to the accident flight was recorded at 1105:56. A loss of engine speed occurred about 1307:40, and routine 1-second data continued until 1309:10. Data resumed at 1309:50 and included a notation "powerup." This is consistent with an interruption of electrical power during the restart attempt. The final data point was recorded at 1309:59. The accident flight duration, from initial power-up of the avionics before takeoff until the loss of engine power and the restart attempt was 2 hours, 3 minutes, and 14 seconds (2.054 hours).

A review of the data revealed that the engine indications were normal until about 1254. Over the next 4 minutes, the engine fuel flow varied from about 3.7 gph to 7.3 gph. The remaining engine parameters remained within normal operating limits during this time. The fuel flow returned to approximately 5.9 gph for the following 4 minutes; the remaining engine parameters appeared stable. About 1304, the fuel flow became erratic, ranging from 2.3 gph to 7.6 gph, and ultimately decreasing to zero. The corresponding parameters including engine speed, oil pressure, exhaust gas temperature, and cylinder head temperature also decreased at that time.

Based on the average fuel flow of 5.89 gph for the accident flight, the calculated fuel consumption since refueling was 12.10 gallons. The pilot reported a total useable fuel capacity of 24 gallons. As previously noted in this report, he stated that the fuel tanks were "topped off" before the accident takeoff.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 72, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land; Single-engine Sea
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 05/18/2015
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/08/2017
Flight Time:  695 hours (Total, all aircraft), 695 hours (Total, this make and model), 586 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 55 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 40 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Registration: N111JW
Model/Series: CC11-160
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2015
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Special Light-Sport
Serial Number: CC11-00360
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 06/30/2017, Condition
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1320 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 20 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 642.1 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Titan
ELT: Installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: OX-340CC-B3J3
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 180 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: PHP, 2209 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 25 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1255 MDT
Direction from Accident Site: 352°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 10 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 310°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 29.79 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 41°C / 9°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Aberdeen, SD (ABR)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Rapid City, SD (RAP)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1210 MDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: Philip (PHP)
Runway Surface Type: N/A
Airport Elevation: 2209 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry; Vegetation
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor

Latitude, Longitude: 44.458056, -101.679167 (est)

NTSB Identification: CEN17LA265
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, July 09, 2017 in Milesville, SD
Aircraft: CUBCRAFTERS INC CC11-160, registration: N111JW
Injuries: 1 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On July 9, 2017, about 1315 mountain daylight time, a Cubcrafters CC11-160 airplane, N111JW, was substantially damaged during a forced landing following a loss of engine power during cruise flight near Milesville, South Dakota. The pilot sustained serious injuries. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight was not operated on a flight plan. The local flight originated from the Philip Airport (PHP), Philip, South Dakota, about 1300.

The pilot informed Federal Aviation Administration inspectors that the engine lost power without warning during cruise flight. His efforts to restore engine power were not successful and the subsequent forced landing resulted in damage to the fuselage and both wings.

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